Artvoice: Buffalo's #1 Newsweekly
Home Blogs Web Features Calendar Listings Artvoice TV Real Estate Classifieds Contact
Previous story: A Rich Season of Literary Events is Ahead
Next story: 10 New and Upcoming Local Records

Classical Music is Back

The fall classical music scene is about to start up

The summer doldrums are about to end for classical music lovers in Buffalo, and here is just a sampling of what’s in store for the fall.

Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra

The BPO launches its new Classic series season at its home in Kleinhans Music Hall on a rather unusual day, with superstar cellist Yo-Yo Ma as soloist for one performance only, on Wednesday, September 18 at 8pm. Music director JoAnn Falletta will be on the podium to lead the orchestra in Stravinsky’s 1911 version of his Firebird Suite, and Yo-Yo Ma will be the soloist in Argentine composer Osvaldo Golijov’s recent work Azul, a concerto for cello and orchestra composed for him, that will be making its Buffalo premiere. A gala dinner package is also available for this event.

Falletta will conduct a pair of concerts on October 4 and 5, featuring the Ukrainian-born Israeli violinist Vadim Gluzman in Bruch’s beloved Concerto No. 1 for Violin. American composer Samuel Barber’s Medea’s Meditation and Dance of Vengeance and Brahms’s Symphony No. 1 are also on the program.

Guest soloist Ricardo Morales, principal clarinetist of the much admired Philadelphia Orchestra, will be featured in Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto under the baton of Falletta on October 19 and 20, with Maurice Ravel’s Mother Goose Suite and Béla Bartok’s Suite No. 1 rounding out the program.

Norwegian guest conductor Arild Remmereit will make his BPO debut on November 2 and 3 in a program celebrating the bicentennial of the birth of Richard Wagner with the “Prelude” and “Liebestod” from Tristan and Isolde and the “Prelude” from Parsifal. Yakov Kasman, a graduate of and a former professor at the Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory, will be the soloist in Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 2.

Virtuoso American violinist Anne Akiko Meyers will make her BPO debut on November 16 and 17 as soloist in Vivaldi’s Four Seasons, the single most popular piece of music in the classical repertoire. Mexican conductor Carlos Miguel Prieto, who will lead the orchestra in Falla’s El Amor Brujo Suite and Haydn’s Symphony No. 96 (“Miracle”), will also be making his BPO debut.

JoAnn Falletta returns to the podium on November 22 and 23 for a program featuring a pair of early works by Bartok, Two Portraits and Kossuth, and Enesco’s ever popular Rumanian Rhapsody No. 1. American pianist Simone Dinnerstein will also make her BPO debut as soloist in Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 2.

Former BPO associate conductor Ron Spigelman returns to lead the BPO on December 6 and 7 in a pair of concerts featuring the BPO Chorus and, as special guests, duo guitarists Joanne Castellani and Michael Andriaccio in Vivaldi’s lovely Double Concerto in G Major, originally written for two mandolins.

For more information, visit

A Musical Feast

On Friday, September 27 at 7:30pm, Charles and Irene Haupt, the founders of A Musical Feast, will host a benefit concert at the Burchfield Penney Art Center for pianist Claudia Hoca, who was critically injured in a car crash when returning from a performance at the Chautauqua Institution. Hoca, who had no health insurance, is still hospitalized, and all proceeds from ticket sales will help defray her already extensive medical bills. All performers are donating their time and the Burchfield Penney is donating the use of the Tower Auditorium. Many BPO musicians will perform, including John Fullam, Amy Glidden, Valerie Heywood, Antoine Lefebvre, and Pierre Roy. Chris Weber, artistic director of the Camerata di Sant’Antonio, will lead the ensemble. UB-based performers include Jonathon Golove and Ana Vafai, with John Bacon, Diane Hunger, and Wildy Zumwalt from the Fredonia School of Music, and Charles Castleman and Alison D’Amato from the Eastman School. Also appearing are Esin Gunduz, Michael McNeil, and John Bacon, who make up the new wave jazz trio, resAUnance.

The Friday, October 11, 8pm concert at the Burchfield Penney looks to be one of the most original in the group’s history. Megan Beugger, composer of Liaison, collaborated intensively with the talented modern dancer Melanie Aceto to develop a work that proved to be one of the most original works at this year’s June in Buffalo new music festival. Aceto will also feature prominently in the premiere of Defence, Israeli composer Moshe Shulman’s newest work. Robert Berkman has had a connection for many decades with Buffalo’s QRS piano roll company, and he has made a career out of preserving the legacy of the piano roll. His portion of the program will expand on his recent well-received pianola recital at the National Gallery in Washington, DC.

The Friday, November 8, 8pm concert will be a birthday celebration for David Felder, SUNY distinguished professor, director of the Center for 21st Century Music and June in Buffalo and artistic director of the Slee Sinfonietta.

For more information, visit

Buffalo Chamber Music Society

The Buffalo Chamber Music Society will celebrate its 90th anniversary season this year, and it still remains one of the very best values on the local classical music scene. For the very low subscription series price of $100, you get the opportunity to attend seven concerts featuring some of the best national and internationally touring chamber music groups.

The season-opening concert of the Tuesday, 8pm evening series on October 8 in the Mary Seaton Room of Kleinhans Music Hall will feature the Attacca Quartet, a young string quartet that is currently one of the most sought-after on the national chamber music scene. Formed while the members were students at Juilliard, the quartet, led by first violinist Amy Schroeder, a Buffalo native, has developed a close professional relationship with John Adams, one of the most prominent contemporary American composers. The group gave the Alice Tully Hall premiere of Adams’s recently composed String Quartet and later recorded all of Adams’s music for string quartet.

The group will begin its fourth season of a New York City series that they initiated, dedicated to performing all 68 string quartets of Haydn, the father of the string quartet. They will perform a Haydn quartet on their Buffalo program, along with a quartet by Fanny Mendelssohn. The concert will also feature a world premiere of a quartet by Christopher Rogerson, commissioned by the Buffalo Chamber Music Society for the 90th season.

Buffalo’s favorite native daughter, flutist Carol Wincenc, returns to town on November 12 as a member of the New York Woodwind Quintet, in a program that includes works by Reicha, Hindemith, Monteverdi, and Villa-Lobos.

On December 10, the Jasper String Quartet, 2012-13 winners of the prestigious Cleveland String Quartet competition, will offer a program that includes quartets by Haydn, Bartok, and Mendelssohn.

In addition to its ticketed Tuesday evening series, the BCMS also sponsors in the Mary Seaton Room, free Sunday afternoon “Gift to the Community” series concerts. This fall’s event occurs on Sunday, November 10 at 3pm, when the 22-year-old Korean pianist JiYong, a winner of the 2012 Young Concert Artists International Auditions, will be featured, before making his New York City and Washington, DC debuts.

For more information, visit

The Friends of Vienna

The Friends of Vienna inaugurate their 38th season this Sunday, September 8 at 3:30pm, with the first ever appearance on their subscription series of the Buffalo-based, world -ouring Castellani- Andriaccio guitar duo, at a new venue, Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, 1080 Main Street near North, across from the Anchor Bar. Joanne Castellani and Michael Andriaccio have done more than any other guitarists to raise the level of both guitar performance and appreciation in the Buffalo area, both through their own active local performance schedule and as longtime judges in the prestigious JoAnne Falletta International Guitar Concerto Competition. The duo’s program will consist of recently composed South American milonga and tango music, written specifically for two guitars, featured on their just released Anima del Sur CD.

The series moves back to its home in the Unity Church on Delaware Avenue for the remaining five concerts in its series, beginning with the October 13 concert featuring the much anticipated return of the extraordinarily gifted pianist Stephen Manes, the retired long-time chairman of the UB music department. Manes will be joined by UB professor of cello Jonathan Golove in a program of works for cello and piano, including Schumann’s Fantasy Pieces, Op.73, Beethoven’s Sonata No.5 in D Major, Op.10, No.2, and Brahms’s Sonata in E Minor, Op. 38. Turkish composer and vocalist Esin Gunduz will offer the world premiere of her own new work for voice and cello, commissioned especially for the Friends of Vienna’s new season.

On November 24, UB professor of piano Eric Huebner, who is also the staff pianist for the New York Philharmonic Orchestra, will be joined by his UB colleague, cutting-edge clarinetist Jean Kopperud, and Chicago Symphony Orchestra violist Virginia Baron, in a solidly traditional program featuring the works of Mozart, Schumann, and Bruch, seasoned with a dollop of the new, provided by György Kurtág.

For more information, visit

Buffalo Opera Unlimited

This year marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of Giuseppe Verdi, and on Friday, September 20 at 8pm, and Sunday, September 22 at 2:30pm, Buffalo Opera Unlimited will present Viva Verdi, a program celebrating his bicentennial, at Rockwell Hall on the Buffalo State campus. The Buffalo Philharmonic Chorus, under its new music director Erin Freeman, will join the members of Buffalo Opera Unlimited, under the artistic directorship of Tim Kennedy, in a program of solo arias, duets, quartets, ballets, and choral works from some of the composer’s best known operas, including La Traviata, Rigoletto, Il Trovatore, and Un Ballo in Maschera.

For more information, visit

Buffalo Chamber Players

It’s just a bit surprising to realize that the Buffalo Chamber Players, the “new kids on the block,” will be already celebrating their seventh anniversary at their season opening concert on Wednesday, October 2 at 7pm, at their home in the Buffalo Seminary on Bidwell Parkway. In addition to their program of chamber works by Beethoven, Dvorák, and Fauré, the ensemble will present Richard Wagner’s rarely performed yet exquisite Träume for voice and chamber orchestra, in celebration of the composer’s bicentennial.

On Wednesday, November 6, the ensemble presents Regional Offerings, a concert featuring works by composers working in the geographical vicinity of Western New York. The program features compositions by Rob Deemer (Fredonia), Caroline Mallonée (Buffalo, NY), Clint Needham (Berea, Ohio), and Amy Williams (Pittsburgh).

For more information, visit

blog comments powered by Disqus